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January 30, 2014 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Chicken on the wings. Kingless.

Didn’t fall off the turnip truck yesterday.

1949-50 GMC truck Dick Fed.

Stupid summer reading list.
(1949.Dick Rowan/NARA.54378/US

Too small to stand up and look over the pickup cab. Had to sit flat on the bed.

“I said sit FLAT or sit inside. No kneeling.”

Had to endure the smug looks of the standing crowd, but determined to tag along.

Huddled among the stork legs.

No one ever fell out on those red dirt roads or pasture rides to feed the cows.

But we did play chicken by holding hands up over ruts and bounces.

They said I wasn’t really playing. How can you play sitting flat?

(Truth be told, my hands were up as defense against the jumble of legs and shuffling feet.)

TX men on porch during dust bowl.

1930’s? Looks much more recent. Only the cars change. (

Size mattered. Even at the supper table.

Portions and pieces were dished out according to the diner’s size.

Call them what you want, “Tiny Drumsticks” weren’t.

Drumsticks were hefty in your hand.

Covered with a crispy crusty coating. Or at least the ones at the cafeteria were.

Even homemade drumsticks had a sort of crunchy rusty coating.

These? Smothered in a suspicious primordial cream gravy.

A vegetarian meal out of necessity.

Plenty of farm produce.

And usually potatoes and gravy. Rolls.

Milk. Glasses and glasses of milk. Quite filling.

The swimming “Tiny Drumsticks” floated onto another plate.

1953 I married Joan kitchen scene.( Bureau of Industrial Service for NBC.Young and Rubicam/US PD:no cr/

Mom wasn’t Betty Crocker. No aprons. Symbols of repression and boring tasks.
(1953.Bureau of Industrial Service/NBC/Young & Rubicam/US

Even as mom aged, she cooked. Suddenly, thrilled with discovering a new trendy meal.

Using easy Shake and Bake technique and the oven. (Easy was her main criteria, always.)

A plate of them arrived at the table: Tiny Drumsticks.

Chicken wings redesigned.

Tea is not as filling as milk.

Super Bowl XLVIII looms. Finger snacks front and center.

Pizza, chips, elaborate dips and salsa (masquerading as healthy).

Featuring the football food essential: chicken wings of all varieties.

Feel free to indulge. I’ll just rummage through the peripheral offerings.

Beer is quite filling.

(And I will too stay awake all the way to the end of the game…)

Vintage football players.1949. Pitt. Panthers vs Notre Dame:US

No chickens here. 1949 Football. (Pitt.Panthers vs Notre Dame/US

Speaking of clucks winging it,

The Farm Bill has passed the House (251 to 166) and is headed to the Senate.

See how your House Representative voted here. You might want to contact them to thank them or to ask what the cluck they were thinking. Find House Representatives’ contact info here.

Despite the best efforts of Big Ag and Factory Farms, the King Amendment was stripped out.

(Previous post here about the monster-sized Farm Bill and the King Amendment here.)

The King Amendment would block/eliminate state laws already existing. Laws like:

  • State laws that protect Child labor, food safety laws, laws regulating dangerous pesticides, and laws making sure farm workers are educated about the chemicals used and safety measures.
  • State laws about labels on farm-raised fish.
  • California’s (and other states’) right to ban extreme confinement cages and crates for laying hens, pigs, and veal calves
  •  Vermont’s ban on BPA in baby food containers
  • Maryland’s ban on arsenic in poultry feed
  • Several states’ ban on horse slaughter
  • Laws about selling dogs and cats as food
  • And there’s the Constitutional issue about the state’s authority to create laws for their state.

Included in the current Farm Bill passed by the House is  “The Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act” (Makes it a crime to knowingly attend an animal fight or take a child one.) This is a good thing.

Here’s a New York Times article about the bill that passed the House.

1917 vintage film "Tillie Wakes Up"/Moving Picture World:World Film.Corp/US

I don’t know. They keep sayin’ they know what’s best for us. They wouldn’t lie, would they?
(1917 “Tillie Wakes Up” /Moving Picture World/World Film.Corp/US

Please contact your Senators and politely ask them to pass the Farm Bill as sent from the House (without the King Amendment but with the Animal Spectator Prohibition Act, and with the requirement that all meat and fruit be labeled with country of origin).

Find your Senator here.

Find a video about the King Amendment/Farm Bill and a suggested contact letter on the US Humane Society’s website here

Who opposes the King Amendment?

The Colbert Report and lots more. See who’s on the record against it here.

Oh? U.S. Rep. Steve King (Iowa) said in December he would not give up on his amendment.

Didn’t fall off the turnip truck yesterday.

You want to feel good about all those football hot wings, right?

It’s not over until it’s over.

A game of chicken.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

You know how a chicken will run around even after you cut off it’s head?

The Christmas Tree Tax is just like that. It’s back in the Farm Bill.

1922 woman with sign in DC/Movie National Photo Company/LOC/US fed.employee/

1922 in DC. Things haven’t changed much.
(1922 Movie National Photo Company. LOC/US

The Christmas Tree tax is a 15 cent fee to be collected by the Federal Government on every Christmas tree in order to fund a government-run board of industry representatives which will spend money to promote American Christmas trees and improve their image….like Santa needs any help with that.

Not all tree growers support this tax. It will mean another government board that will spend tax money for a questionable purposes – like benefitting a private industry. The big tree farm operations and some of the National Christmas Tree Association love it, love it, love it!

Here that jingling? It ain’t Santa and the reindeer.

Might choose to chat with Senators about that, too?

Read more:

  • “Christmas tree fee, hemp support find way into farm bill” Washington Times.(2014) Just can’t dig it. Are they going to tax Lion Dancers, Menorahs, and Buddha statues next? Maybe Muslims are right about no images. The Amish about living plainly.
  • Nov. 2011 “Holidays mean shiny sharp objects” (Ag. dept unwraps a Christmas tree tax)
  • Nov. 2011 “Heartbreaking Reality: Slug America and Dim Christmas Trees” (Panic! Images obviously need sprucing up.)
  • June 6, 2013.”Christmas foraging. Already” (It’s not just the insanely early buying of presents, the feds want to lift the stay stopping the President’s plan to asses a tax on Christmas trees. You do know the “assessment” will increase every year? And then there’s the mixed messages thing…)

Have to say it (sorry): Cluck now or forever be chicken.

(1920 Motion Picture Classic actress Bebe Daniels/US

Looks dangerous? Classic politics in Washington DC.
(1920.Motion Picture Classic/US


  1. The Editors of Garden Variety / Jan 30 2014 11:37 pm

    Thanks for sharing a bit of nostalgia.


  2. susielindau / Jan 31 2014 2:46 am

    Our state voted no. Thank God. I didn’t hear anything about it! Thanks for such an informative post!!!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 31 2014 3:13 pm

      Congress seems so busy, when we’re too busy too check to see if the wolf’s in the hen house. It’s a massive bill – and now they are busy in closed door sessions making deals so it will pass the Senate. Congress is hoping citizens will play ball so the representatives won’t hear a peep about it. Thanks for making like a hawk and flying in


  3. PiedType / Jan 31 2014 5:38 am

    That kitchen pic is straight out of my childhood — Mom’s apron included.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 31 2014 3:16 pm

      I remember those aprons – on other moms and on TV. The stove does look familiar.(How did they manage to keep all starched looking with all the heat, humidity, and steam?) Thanks for scratching through the memories


  4. gingerfightback / Jan 31 2014 7:03 am

    Strange world but the truck is cool!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 31 2014 3:18 pm

      Alway liked the trucks with the rolled edges on the bed wall. Sort of on the lookout for one – what a great ride in good weather. Windows down! Thanks for rolling over


  5. roughseasinthemed / Jan 31 2014 8:49 am

    I’m a fan of the truck too. There are times when a) I am glad I am vegetarian and b) I wonder who invented American politics. I never fail to be amazed about the confusion, the lobbying, and the sheer greed that surrounds it all. Money, money, money, it’s a rich man’s world. (and indeed it is a man’s world). The UK is no better, just differently confusing and differently focused. We do – still at the last time I checked – have a NHS though, and that is one good thing.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 31 2014 3:27 pm

      I’m thinking maybe it’s time to find a truck to restore. They used to be easily found in barns and rusting in fields. Not so much now. (My cousins got one of my uncle’s – it had been safely kept in the barn for years)
      Multi-national companies, big business, big pharm, big ag, insurance companies – that’s whose running things now – elected officials are like tails on the kite 9 holding on tightly to get that money for their election campaigns). We are all becoming serfs again. (We also have lots of consumer/health agencies – they all seem to hate/jealous of each other and have a prime purpose of making their salaries larger/ justifying their existence rather than doing what was intended and watching out for citizens…that’s one reason you hear people here screaming to get rid of them.)
      Enjoy those warm sunny walks – it’s grey/foggy here, but at least warm enough to let the plants out of their blankets and dry enough for squirrel watches. Thanks for driving this route


  6. Snoring Dog Studio / Jan 31 2014 12:44 pm

    Finally, the Farm Bill passes. People got together and did the job they were sent to DC to do. On a quick read, it seems like it makes a good effort to correct some issues. Still, I’m not real thrilled with cuts to the Food Stamp program. Perhaps if our employment rate were higher, it might not have hurt people so much.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 31 2014 3:09 pm

      It’s taken a couple of years, but the Farm Bill is in the Senate…now in closed door sessions. Time to still talk to your Senators about concerns and suggestions. If they don’t hear a peep, they decide. (It’s massive, still going through it). Thanks for flying by


  7. susielindau / Jan 31 2014 3:21 pm

    I can’t believe how little attention this is being given.
    The King Amendment would have set back so many States.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 31 2014 3:36 pm

      Cute Super Bowl commercials and Bieber much more fascinating? News is more magazine stories than hard news that will actually affect people these days. I am not a political person – but when law schools and authoritative legal experts are making noise about a farm bill, people should wonder what’s going on. Sadly, knock-off football souvenirs is higher in citizens’ minds.
      Meanwhile, behind the curtain, serious stuff is going on. Are we headed back to being simple minded serfs?
      Thanks for ruffling feathers


  8. jmmcdowell / Jan 31 2014 9:05 pm

    Thanks for bringing the bill results to our attention! Have to admit, I have no interest in the Super Bowl unless hubby’s Packers are playing. 😉


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 2 2014 1:51 am

      Sometimes I’ve been known to duck out of Super Bowl, but this year the commercials look to be wild….and it’s supposed to be chilly and rainy, so indoors. (Broncos!) Thanks for nesting in a comment


  9. jannatwrites / Feb 1 2014 2:31 am

    I’m glad the King part was taken out. The prohibition of watching animal fights is a great addition. My state was pretty well split on the votes. All of the ‘yes’ votes were Democrat. Interesting 🙂


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 2 2014 2:07 am

      I’ve never really followed legislation much until recently. it would be so much better if the bills were smaller and one bill contained one item/subject – it would require more votes, but perhaps elected officials/citizens would actually be able to read them – and the public could see exactly what items their legislators were voting for or against – and maybe less “I’ll vote for your bill if you put this in it, too.”
      The votes recorded was interesting. Hope that people can vote for what is best rather than along party lines? That would be a change for sure. Thanks for checking the chicken feed.


  10. shoreacres / Feb 1 2014 3:37 am

    I confess – I’ve developed a new appreciation for the apron. Not those crazy ruffled organzas monstrosities, but attractive, full length ones that actually protect clothing and serve a multitude of other purposes. They can be used as a potholder, a hand towel, to gather eggs, etc. etc.

    Re: the farm bill… I think the best thing that could be done is split out food stamps from farm policy. But the first task is to get the thing passed without the King Amendment. Might the Senate actually pay attention? We’ll see.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 2 2014 2:14 am

      A lab apron type! I’d have to have multiples – just too messy for more than one use.
      Once again, one item for each bill – easy to read, easy to see what people are voting for and against. No place to sneak stuff in. Farm bill is huge and food stamps should be standing on their own. Like you, behind closed doors as the 2 houses reconcile their versions/ideas is a dangerous situation. Funny this is all happening at Super Bowl weekend? Still easy to watch the game and leave messages/emails…
      Bundle up – hear the rain and cold are coming back Arrrrrgh. Thanks for nesting here a bit


  11. heretherebespiders / Feb 1 2014 7:41 pm

    Brilliant post. It’s nice to hear some sense now and again (other than the tree-tax).

    I’m still glad that I had a Shake n Bake free life (never tasted it that I know of). We did mix up the flour n whatnot in a paper bag, and then shake – but never bake! Still don’t know how we dealt with the stink of a deep-fat fryer in the kitchen back then – I can’t abide them now.

    We will have wings tomorrow for the Stooper Bowl! Hubby loves that nonsense – I still think maybe I should have imported him to the US instead of exporting myself to Ireland – and we have Monday off as we will likely be up until 4 am watching the commercials, oh, I mean the game. We also have Pabst, pretzels, and ribs on the menu. He ain’t right, that man.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 2 2014 2:17 am

      Stomped that tree taxes’ toes years ago..citizens don’t like it…so why? Anyone listening in DC? HAve to watch them every minute?
      Glad you have Monday off – it will be late – but the commercials I’ve seen so far are terrific. Budweiser and Audi – well done. You really need guacamole, salsa, and chips with that, too. Thanks for flying by with a comment.


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